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Minister floats idea of doing business in English

Latvia's economics minister suggested January 18 that certain business-related public services could be provided in English as well as Latvian to try to stimulate overseas investment and foster transparency.

Economics Minister Arvils Aseradens floated the idea during in a discussion about the shadow economy and its effects on the Latvian economy organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Latvia at the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga.

"Today you are not able to do your book-keeping in English or register a company in English," Aseradens said, displaying a graphic showing that English could be used in communications with the tax authority and company register as part of a large "package of proposals to improve the business environment ecosystem."

"The aim is to really make the system open," Aseradens said.

Too many companies were occupying a "shadow economy niche" and as their profits were reliant upon the shadow economy they were prepared to exert political pressure to prevent improvements to the system and enforcement, Aseradens said.

Unfortunately, no information about the package is currently available in English at the English-language version of the Economics Ministry's own website. It does have one story dated January 4 on the introduction of a new start-up law to encourage foreign investment, but has nothing else since July 2016.

However, the full debate (in English) on tackling the shadow economy in Latvia can be viewed at the American Chamber of Commerce in Latvia's website HERE.

For information on how to set up a company in Latvia under the current system see our recent feature on the subject.

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